Arsenal ensured the race to finish top four will go down to the final day

Arsenal ensured the race to finish in the Premier League’s top four will go down to the final day of the season with a laboured win against relegated Sunderland.

Alexis Sanchez tapped in Mesut Ozil’s square pass to the relief of those inside a sparsely populated Emirates Stadium.

As Arsenal increased in urgency, Sanchez bundled in Olivier Giroud’s cut-back to renew their hopes of a top-four finish for a 21st successive season.

Despite having 36 attempts at goal – the most in a Premier League game since 2003 – the Gunners could not wipe out fourth-placed Liverpool’s superior goal difference.

Arsenal are a point behind the Reds – who are two goals better off – before Sunday’s final matches.

Realistically, Arsene Wenger’s men must beat seventh-placed Everton and hope the Reds slip up against relegated Middlesbrough at Anfield.

Arsenal finish in the top four if:
They win and Liverpool fail to beat Middlesbrough
They draw 0-0 or 1-1 and Liverpool lose by three goals or more
They earn a score draw of 2-2 and Liverpool lose 2-0 (or they draw 3-3 and Liverpool lose 3-1, and so on)
They win, and Manchester City lose – with a minimum five-goal swing in goal difference
Liverpool finish in the top four if:
They win, or they match or better Arsenal’s result
But… both sides could also finish level on points, goal difference and goals scored – resulting in a fourth-placed play-off

BBC

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